Nikita Kucherov has been operated on for a lower body injury and will be away for 8-10 weeks.
The Tampa Bay Lightning forward has missed four games since being injured in a duel with the Washington Capitals on Oct. 16. The Russian has collected four points (one goal, three assists) in three games this season.
“It’s definitely not an injury that will be assessed on a daily basis. We will wait for the official report, but it is certain that he finds himself on the sidelines, ”said coach Jon Cooper on October 18. “He’ll be out for a while. We cannot give a timeline until we have the official report. In the short term, he will be absent. «
Kucherov, who had missed the entire last season after receiving hip surgery, led the NHL in the playoffs when he returned to play with 32 points (eight goals, 24 assists) in 23 games to help the Lightning win. win the Stanley Cup for a second consecutive season.
Kucherov had 34 points (seven goals, 27 assists) in 25 playoff games in 2019-20. He became the sixth player in history to finish first in the playoffs (no tie) in two seasons in a row after Mario Lemieux (1991-92), Wayne Gretzky (1987-88), Rick MacLeish (1974) -75), Phil Esposito (1969-70) and Howie Morenz (1924-25).
“It’s even more frustrating for him because I know how hard he worked to come back,” said Cooper. He was rewarded with another Stanley Cup title, but I know he wanted to have a big season this year. «
The Lightning (3-3-1) will host the Arizona Coyotes for their next game on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; BSSUN, BSAZ, ESPN +, NHL LIVE).